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Featured Reviews

Gil Family Estates – Artisanal Spanish Wine

14 September,2017
The Gil family winemaking roots stretch back 100 years to Juan Gil Jiminez a stonecutter in Jumilla who changed his vocation to winemaker. Over time, the Gil family have grown the business in a unique fashion so that they now work with 10 different wine artisans in widely different regions of Spain to make special regional wine. Being small production, coming under the Gil Family Estate brand has given each of the artisans much greater marketing presence. As a group of wines they show the diversity and possible quality of the wine of Spain at the boutique level, these wine normally remaining undiscovered by the vast majority of wine enthusiasts. The wines are imported by Great Little Vineyards.


Bodegas Juan Gil Jumilla Moscatel Seco 2016

Muscat from Spain

Bright, pale straw-yellow colour with slight green hues. This has a softly full nose with good depth of white florals and citrus zest, savoury musk and grapey aromas, along with a fine herbal thread. Dry to taste and medium-full bodied, the palate has an elegantly concentrated core of exotic florals, citrus zest and savoury musk, with herb and grapey notes. The palate is soft with a roundness and a suggestion of unctuousness, balanced by fine phenolic textures and some alcohol cut and drive. The acidity is integrated, and the wine carries to a lingering, dry, crisp finish of musk and citrus. This is an elegantly concentrated dry Moscatel with floral, citrus and savoury musk flavours, a rich mouthfeel and some alcohol cut. Match with Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine over the next 2-3 years. Moscatel grapes from the valley of La Aragona, fermented in stainless-steel to 13.5% alc. 17.5/20 Sep 2017 RRP $23.50

Bodegas Ateca ‘Honoro Vera’ Calatayud Garnacha 2016

Grenache from Spain

Dark, deep, black-hued ruby-red colour with slight purple hues and lighter on the rim. The nose is elegantly concentrated with firmly packed aromas of ripe, dark raspberry fruit along with dark plums and nuances of boysenberries and jam. Medium-full bodied, the palate is up-front and gently concentrated with accessible flavours of dark raspberries, plums and jam. The fruit is supported by light tannin extraction providing supple textures, and the palate driven by some alcoholic power. The acidity is ripe and integrated, and the wine flows to a soft, raspberry and jam-fruited finish. This is an elegant and accessible Garnacha with sweet dark raspberry and plummy fruit, a supple mouthfeel and some alcoholic power. Serve with barbecued, grilled and roasted red meat dishes over the next 4+ years. Garnacha fruit from Calatayud, vines 30-40 y.o., fermented to 14.5% alc., the wine aged 2 months in French Oak barrels. 17.5/20 Sep 2017 RRP $22.50

Bodegas Juan Gill ‘Honoro Vera’ Jumilla Monastrell 2016

Mourvedre from Spain

Full, even, dark ruby-red colour with black hues, a little lighter on the rim. This has a full and up-front, open nose with aromas of dark raspberries and black berried fruits along with some plum jam. The nose unfolds to show a deep core of black fruits. Full-bodied, this has up-front and bold fruit flavours of juicy dark raspberries, boysenberries and plums with jam notes. The palate has a soft, but dense core with fine-grained powdery tannins providing structure. There is alcoholic drive balanced with integrated, softly ripe acidity seamlessly melded to the fruit. The wine carries to a light, raspberry nuanced finish. This is an up-front, bold, sweet dark raspberry and plum jam flavoured Monastrell with black fruit notes and a fine, structured palate. Match with roasted and grilled red meats and Mediterranean fare over the next 4+ years. Monastrell fruit from Jumilla fermented to 14.5% alc. 17.5+/20 Sep 2017 RRP $22.50

Bodegas Atalaya ‘Laya’ Almansa Garnacha Tintorera/Monastrell 2016

Blended Red from Spain

Full, very deep, impenetrable black-hued ruby-red colour. This has a firm and tightly concentrated, dense nose with aromas of black fruits and dark-red berry fruit, unveiling lifted violet florals, with mineral elements and some smokiness. Full-bodied, the palate is firmly packed and tightly concentrated with flavours of dark-red and black berried fruits along with minerals an smoke. The fruit is underlined by firm, fine-grained tannin extraction with integrated acidity. The wine has positive drive and linearity, and is carried by some alcoholic power, to a long, concentrated, finish of black fruits and minerals. This is a firmly concentrated black-fruited Garnacha/Monastrell blend with plenty of extraction and some alcoholic power. Match with roasted game meat dishes over the next 6-7+ years. A blend of 75% Garnacha Tintorera and 25% Monastrell fermented to 14.5% alc., the wine aged 4 months in French oak. 18.0/20 Sep 2017 RRP $22.50

Bodegas Tridente ‘Entre Suelos’ Vino de la Tierra Castilla y Leon Tempranillo 2014

Tempranillo from Spain

Dark, deep ruby-red colour with black hues, a little lighter on the rim. The nose is full and broad, open with sweet and savoury dark-red berry fruit aromas along with sweet vanillin notes of oak. This is very varietally-expressive, and the aromatics blossom in the glass. Full-bodied, the palate has rich and juicy flavours of sweet and savoury raspberry fruit with notes of oak vanillins. The flavours are open and mouthfilling, and are quite accessible. Light tannin extraction underlines the fruit, and integrated acidity adds to the smoothness. Some alcohol power drives the wine and carries the flavours to a lingering, finely concentrated finish. This is an open and accessible Tempranillo with rich sweet and savoury red fruits with son vanilla notes on a fine-textured, driven palate. Match with Middle Eastern lamb dishes over the next 5-6 years. 100% Tempranillo from the Zamora district, hand-picked and fermented to 14.5% alc., the wine aged at least 6 months in French oak barrels. 18.0-/20 Sep 2017 RRP $25.50

Cellers Can Blau ‘Blau’ Montsant 2015

Blended Red from Spain

Dark, deep ruby-red colour with slight purple hues, a little lighter on the edge. The nose is a little restrained initially but grows to show a deep and concentrated core of ripe black-berried fruit with notes of herbs, spices and minerals. The aromatics are expressed with elegance. Medium-full bodied, the palate has a sweetly rich and concentrated heart of ripe black-berried fruits with dark raspberries along with spices and minerals. A little herbal note adds detail. This has subtle layers and complexity. The fruit I supported by fine-grained tannin structure, the textures fine, but giving plenty of grip. The palate possesses soft acid vitality, and the wine flows with brightness to a long and sustained finish of black fruits and minerals. Serve with roasted lamb, beef and venison, or with semi hard cheeses over the next 6-8 years. A blend of Garnacha, Carignan and Syrah, fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 4 months in French oak barrels. 18.5/20 Sep 2017 RRP $25.50
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